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10 December 2015
News

UN Court Refuses to Prevent Naser Oric Trial

Denis Dzidic BIRN BiH Sarajevo
The international court in The Hague has rejected a request from former Bosnian Army general Naser Oric’s lawyers to order the Sarajevo judiciary to halt war crimes proceedings against him.
Lin Daqun, a judge at the Mechanism for International Tribunals - an institution tasked with wrapping up the work of the Hague Tribunal - rejected on Thursday a request by Oric’s lawyers to order the Bosnian state court to stop the case against him because he has already been acquitted of the charges.

Daqun said in his decision that Oric was acquitted in The Hague of command responsibility for the killings of one Serb at the Srebrenica police station and six others in the local municipality building

But the charges in Sarajevo allege he personally killed one Serb in the village of Zalazje and took part in the killings of two other Serbs in Bratunac along with another Bosnian Army fighter.

“I note that in the present case, the murder charges in the Bosnian indictment fundamentally differ from the murder charges in the Hague indictment with respect to the alleged victims and the nature, time and location of the alleged crime,” said Daqun.

Oric’s lawyers asked Hague Tribunal in October to order the Bosnian state court to “permanently stop proceedings against Naser Oric” because he was acquitted in 2008 of taking part in the same war crimes.

The lawyers argued that Oric cannot stand trial for the same crimes twice.

Oric denied the charges in Sarajevo and the Bosnian court recently said that his trial will open once the Hague judges reach their decision.

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